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Filling the Gap

Chris Dalgliesh and Sue Reuther interviewed by Engineering News
Friday, November 2, 2018
First presented: 
Engineering News, November 2018

Small thermal plants hold promise for regions without grid electricity

Small-scale power generation plants driven by hydrocarbon sources and biomass are still likely to play a valuable part in rolling out electricity in regions of Africa unserved by grid power and where there are insufficient renewable resources to sustain a reliable energy supply, according to SRK Consulting partner and principal environmental consultant Chris Dalgliesh.

In a press release last month, Dalgliesh stated that the lack of a secure baseload energy supply in certain areas could be a key inhibitor of local or regional investment and economic development – and many countries were looking beyond the traditional large-grid model to create broader access to electricity.

“In some cases, a small thermal plant generating 25 MW to 100 MW of power can be a more affordable developmental intervention for a local area, especially if it does not incur the often prohibitive costs of transmission infrastructure across long distances,” said Dalgliesh.

He added that SRK’s experience in various parts of the world suggested that countries well endowed with coal, gas or oil, as well as surplus biomass and combustible waste, could benefit from these options while responsibly managing the environmental impacts.

Acknowledgement: Engineering News






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